Feline Festivity

Vancouverites pioneer a city bash for cat lovers

Tainou Hoeve //  Contributor

Put your dogs on hold this Oct. 7 and leash up your cat instead. That’s right, crazy cat-loving people of Vancouver, First Caturday is back for round numero cinco! (That’s “five” for anyone who stuck with French over Spanish in high school.) If you’ve been wondering why your furry friend has been meowing with excitement in his or her sleep lately, this coming feline festivity could very well be the reason why.

Beginning in June of this year, on the first Saturday of every month, leash-friendly, socially privy kittens of all shapes and paw-sizes, tail-lengths and fur-patterns, have been invited to get out into the sunshine with their owners to participate in what could become the largest cat-walk in modern history.

To Kamille and Erin, the original Facebook founders of the Vancouver event, maintaining a whimsical front is important in the crafting of each year’s run of the event. First Caturday is advertised to be an unofficial social gathering organized by cats alone, with only partial input from their owners when permitted.

Thanks to the omnipresence of social outlets like Facebook in our lives, the event has been gaining widespread appeal throughout North America, due to its unique concept. Although more popular on the Northwest Coast, First Caturday has been enjoyed as far-out East as Boston and Colorado. From the first memorable walk in Dolores Park, San Francisco in 2013 to First Caturday Vancouver — cats and their owners will simply love this opportunity to get out in the world and explore!

Since its commencement in Vancouver, First Caturday has been hosted at Queen Elizabeth Park, drawing nearly 300 cats and owners this past June. For the coming month of October however, the hard-working tree-climbing founders of Caturday have decided upon a new location. From 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday this Oct. 7, cats and owners are invited to gather at John Hendry Park for yet another leisurely kitten-marathon.

Those who are interested in participating in this year’s Caturday, but don’t own a kitten-harness or leash, are encouraged to attend with a stroller, buggy or even a backpack, as long as all animals remain safely secure and comfortable.

First Caturdays’ chief function is bringing like-minded people together at the behest their cat overlords who feel as though long years of potato-chip-eating and couch-lounging have left their owners lazy and indolent. What better way to stretch your legs and connect than in the company of your fuzzy advisor? When it comes to First Caturday, networking, catnaps, and spontaneous friendship are the name of the game.


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